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April 2008 Issue
Hot and Sour Crab Soup
by Philip R. Gantt
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Welcome to Seasoned Cooking and to Phil's International Flair!

I came up with this recipe recently when my fridge stopped working and I had to use the frozen crab meat that had thawed. I had planned to make crab cakes (which I did make), but the inventive side took over and I decided to use part of the crab to make this soup as well.

Should you try this recipe, you may find it very similar to the traditional Chinese hot and sour soup. In fact, it is similar, but uniquely different due to the inclusion of crab. My son, who is very fond of spicy food, really liked this rich and hearty soup.

Now, on to the recipe! Be well, and good eating!


Hot and Sour Crab Soup

You can certainly use canned or fresh crab meat for this recipe if frozen is not available. Also, the juice of a lemon can be used in place of the rice vinegar. Or, you may use any other type of vinegar that you have on hand. The idea is to add some sourness to the broth in addition to the heat.

This soup would make an excellent first course to a Chinese meal, or may be used as a main course when served with appetizers and a side dish.

  • 2 cans chicken broth plus 2 cans water
  • 1/2 lb. crab meat (thawed)
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 green onion, diced
  • 1 tsp. chili sauce (or to taste)
  • 8 to 10 dried shitake mushrooms, soaked for 30 minutes and sliced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 Tbsp. rice vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp. corn starch
In a pot, bring the chicken broth plus 1-1/2 cans of water to a boil. Add the crab meat and reduce the heat to low. Next add the sliced mushrooms, chili sauce, salt and pepper. When the broth begins to simmer, add the beaten egg and stir until it is dissolved. Dissolve the corn starch in the remaining half can of water and add to the broth. Turn the heat to medium and bring to a simmer. The broth should thicken only slightly.

Finally, add the vinegar and taste. Add more chili or vinegar as needed until it is to your liking. Toss in the diced green onion and serve hot. Additional chili sauce and vinegar may be served at the table for those who like their soup more intense.


  • Yields: 6 servings
  • Preparation Time: 15 minutes

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